tv NBC Nightly News NBC November 2, 2010 4:30pm-5:00pm PST
good evening. control of both houses of congress in the balance tonight, so far, a nice uptick for the gop in the u.s. senate races. you're looking at the latest race, boozeman over the incumbent blanche lincoln in the arkansas senate race. as we run through the list that we know of at this hour including georgia, indiana, the first gop pickup of the night in
the senate race there. a former senator returning to the u.s. senate. kentucky, rand paul, son of congressman ron paul. and the tea party candidate going to the u.s. senate from kentucky. leahy, of vermont, his seventh term. ohio, portman, the former congressman and budget director going to the u.s. senate for the republicans. alabama, shelby, going back to the u.s. senate. in delaware, the democrat coons turns away christine o'donnell in a celebrated race there. in florida, a 39-year-old cuban american will represent the u.s. senate for the republicans. maryland, the veteran barbara mikulski going back. and in oklahoma, the doctor, senator coburn going back to the u.s. senate. in north carolina, race just decided in the past few minutes.
the results now in. burr over elaine marshall in the senate race there. in west virginia, a race so many have been watching. too early to call. manchin against renacci. and in the nutmeg state, that's the lineup. the net gain at this hour for the republicans with two. it is where we begin. nbc "nightly news" this election night. captions paid for by nbc-universal television our graphics showing the results in thus far.
we just clocked past 8:30 in the eastern time zone. let's go into the by-the-numbers studio. chuck todd, our political director. you started with all kind offest elections around the country that you would be paying attention to before we got a lot of the raw vote. how are they shaping up. >> let me go to the senate. we talked about this already. west virginia will tell us everything about the republican chances to get ten seats. they've gotten what we expected them to get. indiana and arkansas are the two gains that we're talking about there. but we still have not called west virginia. and that is one of the final three of our final four that we're saying the republicans have to figure out how to get west virginia, california, washington and nevada. that's one of the four. we know manchin has a lead here. 25% of the vote is absentee. that's going to be tough for them to get. i want to go to the house. we've told you all night that the magic number is 39.
guess what? it is now 40. you reported about the delaware senate race. the delaware house seat was a republican-held seat and it is now democrat at this point so the new magic number is now 40 at this point. now, i want to show you one of our watch races because we've called one of these watch races and it's one that could be a bad night for democrats and a good night for republicans and it's out here in the western part of virginia. rick boucher, when can hold his own but not this time. by the way, he voted against health care but he did vote for that climate energy bill that's been nicknamed "cap and trade." republicans ran a "i love rick boucher president obama ad." and "i love rick boucher" was
the phrase and they ran that ad over and over again. this was a district that john mccain carried. >> let me interrupt you and show you a result just now coming in from, again, the race you've been watching. we're calling the senate west virginia race for manchin, the current sitting governor, against the mine owner, communication's company owner, john raese. where does that put things on your board? >> that's a big hold for them at this point so if you look at this, the "what if" map, we have pennsylvania. so now there has to be a clean sweep by the republicans at this point. they'd have to win pennsylvania, illinois, they'd have to win wisconsin, colorado, nevada, california and washington. they have to sweep all seven of those in order to somehow, get control of the senate at this point. it's a tough order when you look at out west because as you know california and washington are very much very blue states and
have been blue states for a long time into all right. chuck todd what we're calling for good reason. our by-the-numbers studio. we'll go back to him all night long. that's the senate where we started this broadcast of "nightly news." house of representatives, a different animal and a different proposition for the republicans. most national pollsters have been predicting a switch of control. kelly o'donnell is in d.c. at the national republican congressional committee where the atmosphere there, kelly, must be upbeat this evening? >> reporter: brian, they are trying to package and contear their reaction to early successes saying they don't want it to be a celebration. they want it to have a serious spirit because of where the country is right now. after all the talk about the anti-washington year, it's here in a d.c. ballroom that national republican leaders are seeing it all unfold. john boehner, the top republican in the house voted in ohio and came back to d.c. and he's now here at this hotel where he's
working with senior staff and what they call a "command center." he's making calls to some of the early gop winners. republican chairman michael steele is in the room and they are will be making remarks later tonight. house speaker nancy pelosi, tried to get u out in front of what could be a difficult night for the democrats talking about their ground game and encouraging people not to make predictions too soon. >> we have the best ground operation to get out the vote. as we gather here, hundreds of thousands of volunteers are walking precincts, making phone calls, ringing those door bells for our democracy. they're out there because they know the tremendous difference that this election will make. >> reporter: so we're in a room where there will certainly be celebration tonight, watching of results. republicans are trying to find a way to not look like they are too jubilant, instead, talking about unemployment being at 10%.
people around the country being upset. recognizing that many voters aren't so happy with republicans either, although many may cast their votes in the "r" column to make a statement to the current administration. brian? >> kelly o'donnell on this big night in washington. a big night all across the country. and all night long we're going to be listening to the voice of the voters. what they're telling the exit pollsters after they've cast their votes. we know what the issues are. but it's tonight, specifically, and the specific numbers and voter attitudes we're interested in. lester holt will be following all those numbers all night long. lester, good evening. >> we've got some amazing storylines we'll share throughout the evening primetime coverage. i want to frame what this election is all about in the minds of most people. almost nine out of ten say it's the economy that's not in good shape. a no-brainer. about the same number are worried about the future. a lot of people are telling us this because it hits home. they know the story personally.
30% have had a job layoff in the family. 42% say their finances are worse than they were the last time they went to the polls two years ago. what does that translate into? anger. folks are mad. we've been hearing it throughout the campaign. 26% of voters say they're angry at the government. nearly half are dissatisfied. less than a quarter say they are satisfied or enthusiastic. when you consider all the negative feelings towards government, it's probably not a surprise that a solid majority think government is doing too much, too much, 56% in all feel that way. 38% want the government to do more. the polls have closed in indiana as you've been reporting. republicans gain a seat with republican dan coats defeating democrat brad ellsworth. and tea party sentiment played a bill role in this race. a double-tick on this number. almost half of voters in indiana say they support the tea party movement. that's a huge number. just 27% opposed. and the republican candidate, dan coats, won 85% of tea party
supporters. the democrats got just 11%. brian, what a huge change from just two years ago when barack obama won indiana, which now apparently is back to a red state this evening. >> lester, you're right. some amazing stats buried in the there with the tonnage of data we're getting. now with more and more of the raw vote in and this brings us to our studio and our panel here and we'll start with our white house correspondent savannah guthrie. what a difference two years makes. a state that barack obama carried now, 45% of those casting a vote today with self-identifying with the tea party. if you're in the west wing of the white house tonight, looking at the results we've seen so far, what are you happy about? what are your minor victories as we go on through election day? >> they're very much hoping to hold on to some of the important state houses like the ohio governor's race where the president has been out there
multiple times. during his term as president i think he's been to ohio 12 times, showing you how important it is. that's a silver like. you mentioned the tea party support up in the 40s in some of these key states. that's why you'll never hear any of the officials at the white house bad-mouthing the tea party or trying to portray it as somehow extreme. they know, people that identify themselves as tea partiers or supporting the tea party movement right now that's where a lot of independent voters are all important to the white house. >> and yet, david gregory, moderator of "meet the press." as we go through tonight what i think will emerge as a topic of conversation is -- how long does its last? how fraught is the path from the good news of tonight, for this bu new political movement and the path to actual governing? >> it's going to be difficult. look at the exit poll and look what voters are saying. they are incredibly worried about the economy over the next year.
tremendous anxiety about that, on voters' minds. and a lot of frustration with both parties in terms of how congress is working. to pick up on what savannah is saying the president is not on the ballot but this is a referendum. the disapproval rate of the president in west virginia, 69%. how did manchin win in west virginia? he went on television and literally, shot with a gun, the cap and trade bill. this was running away from the president and his agenda and, of course, manchin is governor, we remember, as governor was popular with west virginiaians. an unsettled mood out there. >> might have been the most effective tv ad in a sea of really aggressively bad tv ads this season. andrea mitch chel, we asked you, among your many talents, to look at all the state houses in play tonight. politically, these are local races. people aren't voting nationally and that's where the rubber meets the road. >> a record-setting 37 state houses and as savannah said about ohio, a lot are big
electoral states and a lot of this will reset the battleground for 2012 so the president has a big stake in this. if republicans pick up, let's say six, and they are very much ahead of this going into election day, if they pick up only six, they would have 30 state houses and that would be the biggest majority in state houses they've had in 16 years. there's also a lot of interesting referendum ballot issues in california. they're looking at this big referendum on whether or not to legalize and regulate recreational marijuana. >> that's the one gregory is watching closest of all. and mark whitaker, our washington bureau chief. after the confetti is sweeped up, at the end of the line, what party does the republican party become? what has it become over the course of this election? >> before we forget the race in delaware and the loser, christine o'donnell, who we talked a lot about on
television, all the talk of witchcraft. that was joe biden's seat. and when he didn't run -- when he pulled out and they nominated him, the republican side, mike castle, a moderate republican, who everybody thought very popular would win, was taken out by this new committeer, christine o'donnell and she lost tonight. as chuck said, the win for democrats in west virginia makes it very tough for the republicans to take back the senate. if they come close and the difference was that race in delaware and the tea party challenge, i think there's going to be a lot of questions about the new place in the tea party in the politics and i think that may also play in the debate going forward within the republican party, about who holds the whip hand going forward. >> tom brokaw having covered so many of these and seen political movements come and go, there will be great temptation tonight to make too much of this movement.
that, as i say, is really a collection 06 smaller movements. >> i'd like to remind people that ronald reagan at the end of his first two years had a lower approval rating than obama does right now. gets re-elected by a landslide. bill clinton, they were writing his political obituary after newt gingrich and the contract with america comes in and two years later he wins in a landslide. a couple things to keep our eyes on. the universe has changed. there's a lot more parts to it now. not just the independents but the tea-party movement and new instrumentation on the internet and the wise heads in the republican party are already beginning to say and i count haley barber as one of them, the governor of mississippi saying, electorate is not saying, we love you republicans. they're just saying, we're going to give you a chance, the pollster, very popular with republicans saying today. this is not a vote for republicans. it's a rejection of president obama and all he stands for. so the republicans are not going to walts into washington and
have it their way. >> very little love being expressed. some on local races but most of it is, if you're in office now we want to have a talk with you. a quick reminder. obviously, we'll have nbc news primetime coverage tonight but tonight we're coming back on after your late local news. giving mr. fallon and mr. leno a break because we have a lot of election night to cover. that coverage here on "nightly news" will continue rights after this.
today alone in baghdad, at least 13 explosions ripping through mainly shiite neighborhoods, killing at least 76 people, wounding more than 200 others. there were car bombs, roadside bombs and mortars. today's violence came two days after gunmen attacked a church in baghdad leaving another 58 dead. that terrorist plot involving cargo bombs from yemen just keeps getting more and more troubling. the fbi is now investigating what may have been a so-called "dry run." and whether al qaeda terrorists in yemen sent packages to the u.s. to see how long that process would take. our justice correspondent, pete williams, is covering this story from the night and has more from our washington newsroom. pete, good evening. brian, intelligence officials say this could have been an attempt to explore the logistic of international shipping. a month and a half ago in mid september, suspected al qaeda members in yemen sent three packages to chicago.
nothing hazardous was found when the boxes were checked en route and allowed to continue, containing mostly books and papers, nothing like the computer printers that hid explosives. in europe, the police are chasing a separate spade of package bombs in greece. two bombs went after outside the russian and swiss embassies. and in germany, police disarmed a bomb from greece to the office of chancellor angela merkel. the police suspect a radical anti-government grew but raising more questions about cargo and mail screens. >> pete, thanks as always. and aid heads-up. aiti could be dealing with a hurricane by week's end. a very worrisome situation potentially. the storm tomas is centered about 300 miles south of haiti. u.s. naval vessels headed with additional disaster relief as
haiti, remember, continues to deal with more than a million homeless people, earthquake survivors, all of them, and the continuing spread of cholera there. we want to go back to politics now as the time zones go west, we want to go to california. our own lee cowan is live for us in oakland. lee, you have several hot race there is tonight? >> reporter: yeah, brian. this is obviously one of the places the president may get good news because the democratic incumbents were leading in the pre-election polls. if you look at senate rate, barbara boxer had the advantage over carly fiorina. and meg whitman, she spent more of her own money than any other candidate in history, $140 million and she still came in behind jerry brown in this race so it's not going to be necessarily all that tight. democrats think, they hope, this will remain reliably blue. >> lee cowan in oakland, california. and now another
closely-watched race. nevada senate. and the question here -- harry reid, who is the democratic leader in the senate, can he hang on to his job? john yang covering in las vegas for us tonight. hey, john, good evening. >> reporter: hey, brian. high stakes here in las vegas. at the end of voting it doesn't look like it's going to be tends of the gamesmanship in the ranker. here at this hotel where harry reid is having his election night party, the tea party express without telling the hotel who they'll really were and what they were up to has also booked a room for election night party. who knows if the two sides will meet, brian? >> john yang in las vegas tonight. thanks. and when our broadcast continues from our election headquarters in new york, we'll have just a few of the millions of americans who voted today. we'll have them tell us what was on their minds.
back here tonight from decision 2010 headquarters. earlier in the broadcast we saw the economy is a major factor in a lot of the votes being cast today and we knew that much for every voter, though, there's a slightly different story. personal reason he or she decided to cast a ballot today. so we wanted to end tonight with a snap shot of a few of them from around the country. our report tonight from rahema ellis. >> reporter: in miami, elana davis was in step with about 25 million americans who voted early.
>> i am a retired real estate professional. >> reporter: this loyal democrat concerned about affordable health care and jobs, says she's fed up with bitter party politics. >> i would like to see the republicans and democrats working together for the good of the country. all of this bickering and mean-spirited attitudes, i don't like it. >> left, right. >> reporter: for some other voters today, it wasn't a question of left or right. >> that's who we're voting for congress. >> i'm a single mother with two children. >> reporter: in rockhill, south carolina, this 41-year-old mom says education tops the list of her concerns. as an independent, she voted based on the issues. >> locally, i tend to vote for the person who's going to support public education because that's the business i'm in and i'm passionate about it. >> reporter: in san diego, this man voted the democratic ticket since he was 18. >> i'm fred and i'm a latino business owner. >> reporter: but today he voted republican concerned about the slumping economy and family members still in mexico who may want to come to america.
>> we need fair representation that will look out for our issues. we can't just vote one way all the time if they're not going to be responsive. >> reporter: if you're wondering about the youth vote, pivotal in barack obama's victory two years ago, pundits say with few jobs and climbing student debt, youthful political enthusiasm has faded. but not for james deangelo. >> i'm a first-year law student from chicago. >> reporter: he campaigned until the last minute. >> the immediate job growth prospects are really important. i'm afraid of what our economy might look like in the next two to four years. >> reporter: for americans, each motivated by different issues casting their votes on election day. rahema ellis, nbc news. that does it for this broadcast this tuesday night. thanks for being with us from our election headquarters here in new york and another reminder. back on the air during primetime with our decision 2010 coverage and then on again after your late local news tonight into